I took the Iran Air flight #260 from Tehran to Mashhad (September 21, 2014). It was a 75 minute of smooth flying and. Mashhad met me with the sun, a very old and yet very clean airport. I took a cab to Pars hotel and took my camera and started taking pictures. Mashhad is the home of Imam Reza Shrine, the eighth Shia Imam. Click HERE to watch a video of the shrine. This is the second most populous city in Iran. Its population was 2,772,287 in 2011. Due to its geographic location, it was a major oasis along the Silk Road connecting with Marv in Turkmenistan. This is the first time I come to Mashhad and I have to admit that it is not what I had imagined. It is a modern cosmopolitan city with very wide boulevards and spotless sidewalks. Its light rail train runs east-west and my hotel was within walking distance of Sayyad Shirazi station. Two more lines are under construction. I spent a couple of hours walking and enjoying the spotless sidewalks and gorgeous boulevards. Around 6:00 PM I took a cab to the Imam Reza Shrine and took a bunch of pictures of pilgrims from all over the Islamic world. They do not allow cameras inside the shrine. From there I walked to the Nader Shah Afshar’s tomb and museum. Next day I drove to visit a few villages near Mashhad. Click HERE to watch a video of this drive to Shandiz.